On This Day: April 9

Baseball Umpire Emmett Ashford and table tennis sensation Deng Yaping feature in our remarkable sporting events that created history on April 9th.

1966 – Emmett Ashford makes MLB history


Ashford made history when he became the first African American umpire in Major League Baseball.

He made a name for himself in the 12 years he spent on the Pacific Coast League, where he became known for his showmanship and energy on the field.

Ashford made his MLB debut at D.C. Stadium and quickly became a sensation, with his flashy style, which included pressed suits and jewellry, winning over fans.

1989 – Deng Yaping bursts onto the scene


China’s Yaping shocked all when at just 16-years-old, she teamed up with Qiao Hong to win her first world championship title in the women’s doubles.

In the early stages of her career, Yaping was often looked off by national selectors due to her stature (she is just 1.5m tall), but eventually made it onto the Chinese team as a regular.

Yaping flourished o the world stage, notching up six world championships and four Olympic championships on her way to becoming one of the greatest players in table tennis history.

Sporting Birthday

1848 FA MacKinnon, cricketer